I recently had my question (Original question) on Stackoverflow closed as not constructive and sent to FAQs to read why... well my problem is that FAQ tells things as follows:

- practical, answerable problems that are unique to the programming profession

… then you’re in the right place to ask your question! 


 However, if your motivation is “I would like others to explain ______ to me”, then you are probably OK.

Now my concern is that Stackoferflow used to be/still is a real treasure to getting expert opinion and guidance on various matters, and being a site with so many experts and broad reach, is in my mind the only site I trust to get the answer which will be validated by peers and 'guaranteed to be correct of be flagged down'.

Now I see there is some 'purist' movement to get rid of all the questions that require some general knowledge and leave only questions of the my code for (i=0, i++, i<0) does not work, please help! type.

I struggle to understand how do open ended questions hurt Stackoverflow? Every time I type an open ended question on google I get at least one link to a Stackoverflow question which 95% of times has the correct and proper answer. I doubt it I will ever look for an answer to the question my code for (i=0, i++, i<0) does not work, please help!. If I will have a question like this other answers wont help me and I will have to ask my own question to get tailored answer. If this is the only type of questions you want why bother with the web accessible interface? Just have people answer via email to those interested as most of the questions are too personalised to be useful to others.

I have a feeling some powers that be want to control Stack overflow too much and make it too elitist, denying regular folks who have really no one else to ask an access to it accumulated knowledge pool.

Now you can tell me to shut up and close this question as not constructive :P. I just wanted to highlight that perhaps being too strict != doing the right thing.


As most of the questions are too personalised to be useful to others. I don't agree. Since the start of my coding career, I relied heavily on various SE sites especially SO. I've always found the same my code doesn't work kinda question, but one of those similar question always mirrored my problems. If not, then still the answers provided me the possible solutions to try out.

Stack Exchange sites are for generalized problems which are almost closed ended. That means you'll get perfect answer which can be applied in any situation to anyone having the same problem. The problem with open-ended questions are they can not be answered perfectly and people tend to have disagreement over the same method to solve the problems. The answer to which is the best programming language depends upon personal choice. I like Java, others may say C++, some would say Python, and people will vote for Dart. So how will this help the asker? He'll be in greater dilemma than before.

  • I agree that it should not be free for all but some more lee way should be exercised. Nov 28 '12 at 7:33

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .